Building and maintaining profitable relationships with your clients and prospects is essential to your success, no matter what business your are in. Your goal is to create clients who are totally sold on you and the services you provide, welcome the opportunity to refer others to you, and purchase additional products and services from you.
Here are 4 ideas that you can use to convert prospects into clients, retain long-term clients, and build an army of satisfied customers who look for ways to send business your way.
1. Market to your existing clients.
Your best prospect base is your current customers. Be sure that you have present your complete line of products an services to them. Not doing so is unfair to your and to your customers. Your current customers are most likely to buy from you again because they are already doing business with you. Devote most of your time, efforts, and resources to building deeper relationships with your current customers rather then focusing your resources on an unknown market.
TouchPoint Tip: The more satisfied your clients are with you, the more likely they are to want to share your services with their friends and associate.
2. Look For Ways to Reward Your Clients.
Look for opportunities to show your clients how much you appreciate having them as a customer. Send a personalized greeting cards of appreciation for their loyalty and include a gift. Send a gift that they can share with their friends and co-workers (brownies, popcorn, gift basket…).
3. Get to know your clients.
Ask questions about them and their interest and goals. Get to know about them, their family and what they want to accomplish in life.
TouchPoint Tip: Focus on sending personalized greeting cards based on their interests, while celebrating the important milestones in their lives. Your cards will be displayed as a testimony to the relationship you’ve built with them, and you’ll remain top of mind because you took the time to care about them.
4. Position yourself as a resource.
Look for ways to help your clients and prospects. Introduce them to others, send them referrals, build a relationship that shows you care and that you will be around long after the sale. Keep in touch, share resources, and remember to celebrate the important events in their life by sending a personalized greeting card: birthday, anniversary, life changing event, accomplishments, etc.
I hope you found this newsletter to be informative and helpful. I welcome your comments and suggestions. If I can help you in any way feel free to contact me.
Why not use this natural tendency of others to slack off to separate yourself from your competition? Your clients will become enthusiastic supporters who talk to their friends about the special attention they're getting from you. You'll obliterate any buyer's remorse. They'll tell others how great it feels to know they've made the right choice.
It goes without saying that you must be excellent at what you do and deliver what you promise, otherwise no amount of customer recognition or appreciation will turn a client into a friend.
Use a system
Here is a simple, inexpensive, easy-to-implement system for building a productive and profitable relationship with virtually any new customer. It's designed to create loyal customers who continuously tell their friends and associates how great you are.
Immediately send a card to your client thanking him for the trust and confidence he placed in you when he became a customer. Don't underestimate the power of a personal card. It doesn't take long to do it, and it makes a big impact.
If you have an assistant, have them call to welcome your new client and introduce themselves. This shows that your whole team is ready to serve.
Call your client within 3 days to personally thank them again and see if they have any questions or need any assistance. On this call tell them you'd like to spend a half-hour or so getting to know them better so that you may be able to refer business to them (or help them reach their goals). Schedule either a phone call or a meeting over coffee. Try to schedule it the next week. This shows that you really care and can have a powerful impact.
When you meet, either by phone or in person, focus on their needs, desires, dreams and goals. Ask questions about them. Get to know how you can help them. If you have not done so yet, get family information and birthdays. Make a friend.
After your meeting
Use the Internet to find an article, web site or other resources that can help your client. Email this to them with a short note. Send a card letting them know how nice it was meeting with them.
Schedule a birthday card to go out a week before the birthdays that you've gathered. Be creative; if the client has a small boy, send him a card from your dog rather than yourself. These should be real cards, the kind your client can touch and feel, not e-cards. They should also include a personal note.
One way to do this is to buy the cards on your way home from the meeting, address them, stamp them and put them in a tickler file. Then on the day you send them include a personal note and mail it.
NOTE: I use an automated system that sends these cards out for me. It's a powerful system that lets me send a greeting card using the internet and my computer. I choose a card, type in a note, address it, and click Send. The company prints it, stuffs it, stamps it and mails it for only $2.99 and that includes the postage! They also provide a wholesale package that cuts the cost in half. If you'd like to give it a try visit: http://treatthemright.net
About a week after your meeting send a follow-up thank you. Include a brief note telling why you're glad he is your client. You may want to include a gift card – I often use a $5 Starbucks card. Note: If you're in an industry such as Real Estate where an after the sale gift is standard procedure, this should be in addition to that gift.
During the next month or two connect with your client at least once a week, then aim for twice a month. If you have a newsletter this is a great way to keep in front of your client continuously.
Suggestions for keeping in front of your client
Check the Internet for articles or resources of interest to your client. If I find a number of sources, I save them and then drip them on my client. Too much information all at once can be a burden rather then a help.
Keep your eyes out for anything of interest to your new client; books, web sites or other offline resources. For example, say your client likes Italian food and you learn of a new restaurant. Give them a call and tell them about it, or email them.
The point is, you want to stay in front of your clients in ways that provide value to them and at the same show that you recognize and appreciate the contribution they make to your success. Do this and they will enthusiastically look for people to send your way.
I hope you found this article to be informative and helpful. I welcome your comments and suggestions. If I can help you in any way feel free to contact me.
Most business people think that just because a client likes them and is satisfied with their services, they must be doing a good job in building relationships. Actually, nothing could be further from the truth. The fact is there is a huge difference between having clients like you, and like you enough to put their reputation on the line by referring their friends and associates to you. This article introduces 6 steps that you can use to create customer loyalty and generate a stream of customer referrals.
You most likely know a number of real estate agents, all who are very good at what they do. Which one will you tell a friend about? I bet it's the one that you know is competent AND who has gone the extra mile to develop a strong relationship with you; the one who has never missed your birthday; who you've met for coffee a few times; who sent you a copy of the article about your favorite hobby; whose actions show they like and respect you — not as a potential sale, but as a person. In other words, a person who is, knowingly or unknowingly, practicing the art of building a relationship.
What follows is an example of a Client Relationship Building Plan for new clients. The goal is to take a client from just liking you and your services to being a loyal advocate who enthusiastically raves about you and your services. The actual tools, strategies and techniques used in each step are determined by the specific needs of your business or profession.
The above approach looks like a lot of work and it is, but it's much easier, more rewarding and less expensive than most other methods of attracting new clients. Plus, it is a great way to do business!
I am a firm believer in the Law of Attraction; that what we send out is what we get back. Send out thoughts of abundance and joy and attract abundant and joyful people. When the above six steps are implemented with the right attitude, you harness the full power of the Law of Attraction. And that’s when miracles happen, both personally and professionally.
I hope you found this article to be informative and helpful, if so please share it on your social networks and add your comments and suggestions below.
To your Continued Success,
Building a profitable business is almost always the result of creating strong relationships with your customers. Here are are seven relationship marketing ideas you can use to build solid and profitable client relationships. Nothing new here, just 7 common sense relationship marketing ideas that we all know, but seldom use.
1. Be sure your customers know what level of service you provide.
Does McDonald's have the best hamburgers, shakes and fries. I doubt it. Then why are they so successful? According to most marketing experts, it's when you go to McDonald's you know exactly the level of service and quality that you will get. Do your client's know the level of service that they will get every time they do business with you? We all develop certain expectations with the people that we deal with, be sure that you always meet or exceed them.
Relationship Marketing Tip: Monitor your business carefully and make constant improvement a goal. But don't implement changes that you can't maintain.
2. Don't hide Your light under a basket
I don't care how good you are at what you do, it's of no value unless your clients recognize it. If you don't confidently let the people you interact with know the value you bring to the table, why should they do business with you? If you don't feel confident, then as a number of motivational trainers say: Fake It Till You Make It.
Here's a tip for increasing your confidence: Document the “best way” to handle events that occur regularly in your business and create an action plan for each situation. Not only will this increase your confidence, it will help insure that you are consistent in your client interactions.
3. Get to know what your clients want and need
According to Havey McKay, author of “The Harvey Mackay Rolodex Network Builder” and “Dig Your Well Before You're Thirsty“, the more you know about your clients and the more you use that information to your client's benefit, the better your relationship will be and the more sales you will make. I use his “Mackay 66” questionnaire as a guideline to help me get to know more about my clients. It's a great tool. If you would like a copy you can download it here MacKay 66.
Relationship Marketing Power Tip: A great way to use the MacKay 66 is to picture your perfect client and then fill in as much of it as you can using your fictitious client. This is a great way to profile your target market.
4. Don't hide from complaints view them as opportunities to serve
If you want to take your relationship marketing to the next level view complaints an opportunity to serve. When you quickly resolve customer's problems, you let them that they are important to you. This not only builds a stronger relationships, it prevents that customer from spreading bad news about your business. How you handle complaints can be the difference between success or failure. Remember, the clients may not always right, they always thinks they are. Strive to resolve customer problem to their satisfaction and you create good will that is bankable.
5. Make your clients feel important – Because They Are!
Do you let your customer's know how important they are by recognizing their birthdays or other special occasions? Do you thank them for referrals. Do you thank them for their business? Is client recognition a part of your marketing budget? When was the last time you followed up a sale with thank-you card and a phone call? How often do you check in with your clients just to see if there is anything you can do to help them?
If you don't think your clients are important, try doing business without them.
6. Keep your clients up to date about your business
One of the most powerful ways to generate a consistent flow of referrals is to educate your clients. Call, write or email them when you have a new product or service that can help them. Have a newsletter that keeps your clients up to date on what is happening in your business? Provide tips that can help them get more value from the products they already have. The more your customer know about you and your business the the more referrals you will receive. One reason customers don't refer as often as they could is simply because they forget about you. When you keep in contact via newsletters, emails and phone calls they are more likely to remember you when a friend is looking for the types of products or services you provide.
7. Help your clients
The best way to make a friend is to be a friend. The best way to create client loyalty is to be loyal to your clients. Your customers are looking for answers, information that can help. Do you help your clients whenever you can, or do you just contact them to sell them more. Become a resource to your customers and provide help that goes beyond the service that you provide. If you want loyal clients who consistently send referrals, implement the ideas in this section — you'll be glad you did.
Make using the above relationship marketing suggestions a permanent part of your relationship marketing plan. I recommend you follow Ben Franklin's approach, Select one of the above suggestions each week and work on it. Keep doing this until these suggestions become a habit and then keep doing this. Give this a try for at least twelve weeks, if you do, you'll be amazed at how much business seems to magically appear.